Thursday, November 19, 2015

Contra Krugman

Over the years, Paul Krugman has contributed many valuable op-eds regarding politics and economic; but his post- Paris attacks column  is less percipient.

Take, for example, Jeb Bush’s declaration that “this is an organized attempt to destroy Western civilization.” No, it isn’t. It’s an organized attempt to sow panic.

Actually, at a strategic level, ISIL does indeed envisage “an organized attempt to destroy Western civilization,”  even if Jeb Bush says so too.   What demonstrates this  is not the Paris attacks per se (whether the Death Metal at the Bataclan represents that civilization, or rather its decline, must be left to the reader to judge), but rather the programmatic statements of ISIL itself, revealed in complete candor in several issues of their English-language magazine Dabiq, available online.  Note in particular the cover of issue #4, in which the cross atop the obelisk has been replaced by the ISIL flag (placed into context here:
and, even more remarkably, the cover of issue #2, which you can view here :

To understand why, already with the second issue, ISIL should highlight Noah’s ark, requires a level of strategic understanding not evinced in Professor Krugman’s column.   Ask yourself as well why Daesh would be so particular about destroying pre-Islamic antiquities -- of no military value, and not especially well calculated to “inspire fear” in the West;  or why, out of all the targets in Tunisia, they chose the Musée du Bardo (Roman antiquities).


Bonus -- 
For an in-depth Auseinandersetzung with Krugman’s essay “Interests, Ideology And Climate”,  try this:

            The Psychology of Meteorology

And, on Paul Krugman and Thomas Frank:

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